April 2018-John Johnson

Q: Tell me a little bit about yourself. (Where you’re from, what you’re doing now…etc)

A: I am originally from near Billings, MT. I went to Montana State in Bozeman and got my degree in Accounting. I met my wife, Jan while living in Denver. We moved to Rapid City in 2016 with our son, Henry (who turned 5 last week!) when I accepted a position working for Black Hills Corp as an internal auditor.

Q: How long have you been running and how did you get started?

A: I started running in my junior year of high school when two of my friends convinced me that it was a good idea.  

Q: Would you rather run with a group or alone?

A: I enjoy both. Group runs are great motivation and a great way to get to know people and new places to run. I also enjoy learning about different running and training strategies. But I also like to zone out by myself to find some zen.

Q: Do you prefer roads or trails?  

A: I prefer trails, but I don’t mind running on the road either. There is just something about trail running and the intense focus on what you are doing with your body on every stride (at least for me), and taking in all the wonderful scenery that kick the awesome factor up a couple notches.

Q: What is your favorite distance or race?

A: I don’t think I have a favorite distance. Each race has its own challenges. Shorter distances burn harder and longer distances test you mentally. I prefer anything where you finish downhill!

Q: How do you stay motivated when you don’t want to run?

A: This is a tough one for me. I am good at excuses. I don’t know if I have a good answer. Some days you just have to lean forward and do it.

Q: If I didn’t run I’d ………..

A: In terms of recreation, I would most likely spend more time road and mountain biking. I could also play a little basketball or softball.

Q: What do you find to be the most rewarding thing about running?

A: When I am in good shape, I have more energy all day long. I want to be up and active. Maintaining good health doesn’t hurt either. But the most rewarding part is that moment in the middle of a run or a race when everything is in sync and feel like you could run forever. Maybe that’s the “runner’s high”. Feels a bit like floating. It doesn’t happen all the time, but it’s cool when it does.

Q: What is your favorite running memory?

A: Senior year in high school. State XC meet in Helena. I was the 7th man on the 7-man team. I PR’d by 30 seconds (17:47) and finished 3rd on the team. I passed about 10 people in the last 100 yards.

Q: Do you have a pre-race ritual?

A: I will do all of my mental prep the night before, think about all the logistics, breakfast, clothes, weather, parking at the event, etc. so when I get up, I don’t have to think about anything else besides the run. I like to clear my mind as much as possible. I usually get some sweet tunes going to set the mood.

Q: What are your running goals for the future?

A: I finished my first marathon last fall, so that was a big one off the list. I think the biggest thing for me is to keep the momentum going. My goals this year are actually around the non-running parts (managing work stress, being a good husband and father, and those dang carbs).

Q: Who inspires you most?

A: There are a lot of people that I get inspiration from. Many of them are in this club! Variety is the spice of life and I am inspired by the different stories and motivations that get people out there and running. I am inspired by people that push through adversity to make it happen as well as those that just make a habit out of running every single day.

Q: What advice do you have for new runners?

A: Don’t measure your success based on what you did yesterday or what anyone else can do. Take what your body will give you today and be glad.